A Personal Dilemma

Generally a dilemma is presented as someone having to make a choice. One choice might be seen as the lesser in terms of risk and possible negative outcomes, but it might also not give the results that the individual desires.

The second type of choice may be clear, but it might result in things unforeseen, things that could be harmful or dangerous. In fact, the character might find the end life changing in an unbearable way.

When writing a scene in which your character must make a choice, present options that are demanding, clear-cut, but terrible. Create tension by making the reader question the character’s judgement. The reader should second-guess possible outcomes and want to warn the character away from taking the wrong step.

Your task is to write a scene in which your protagonist is faced with two equal choices. The decision must be made quickly as there is no time to research or deliberate. This will amplify tension. That hurry will lead to devastating consequences for himself or for those he loves. When the scene ends, perhaps an alternative presents itself that he didn’t see beforehand.

At the end the reader wants to know if the protagonist has changed in away way. Is he humbled? Chagrined? Remorseful? Ashamed? And if he is, how has the experience altered his thinking.

Have fun with this one.